Strange, ghostly and macabre tales are never far from the surface in historic 1066 Country.
Invasions, battles, pirates, smuggling and murders — not many places have had such a dramatic history as ours. It’s little wonder that long after they passed away the spirits of 1066 Country remain. As you explore the relics and ruins of 1066 Country don’t be surprised to hear the eerie sounds of footsteps behind you or come face to face with a ghostly Norman knight, for some 1066 Country is a place they don’t want to leave!
The medieval citadel of Rye is teeming with ghosts, which is not surprising due to the long and bloody history of this ancient Cinque Port, with its tales of murder, smuggling, pirates and slaughter. It should come as no surprise that the most haunted pub in the UK can be found here. The Mermaid Inn dates back to 1156 and was notorious for being the haunt of smugglers, including the infamous ‘Hawkhurst Gang’ there have been many sightings here of spirits that you could fill a book with, but, the most alarming report is that of a pair of phantom duellers fighting with swords. The duel ends with one of the ghosts being run through with a sword and the body dropped through a trapdoor!
A visit to the Rye Heritage Centre will give you a unique opportunity to visit the sites of Rye’s hauntings, ghost sightings, paranormal activities and the unexplained with one of their ghost tours.
Visiting the site of the Battle of Hastings is a spine-tingling experience. Spooky sightings of Harold’s doomed Saxon army and a phantom mounted Norman knight galloping across Senlac Ridge have all been reported. Legend also has it that the blood of the battle’s victims runs from this field when it rains.
Standing on the spot of King Harold’s last stand, you can almost hear the hiss of the Norman arrows and the thunder of hooves as the Norman knights closed in on the stricken king. The hairs on the back of your neck stand on end as you hear the voices of the ghosts of those that died on that tumultuous day.
The Abbey here is reputedly haunted by phantom monks, a lady in red and a Norman knight. Monks’ Walk in the Abbey grounds is locally known as Ghosts’ Walk and for good reason!
If you are brave enough, take the Ghost Walk at the 1066 Battle of Hastings, Abbey and Battlefield